Consumers require speed in their online interactions. We are an impatient breed, and we expect pages to load within just a few seconds.
If it takes too long, odds are we’ll abandon it.
Responding to our impatience, Google began promoting page speed in their search algorithm, and finally made it a ranking factor in July 2018.
So how does this affect a marketing and advertising company primarily representing life sciences? In our typically conservative industry, any change has to be reviewed against regulatory and security considerations. When creating a website for an analytical chemistry company or an HPAPI CDMO, there may be additional factors to consider besides implementing portals to increase engagement.
However, the change from HTTP (the way a browser communicates to your web server to receive the files to display your website to a user) to HTTP/2 is a simple choice that comes with a range of benefits.
What Is HTTP — and Why Isn’t It Good Enough for Your Website?
HTTP stands for Hypertext Transfer Protocol. You can think of it as a “road” between your browser (For example, Chrome or Safari) and a website’s server. Every page on a website is made up of many files. HTTP 1.1 can carry only one file request at a time. The more files, the longer a page takes to load. HTTP 1.1 is also not secure, so anyone can see the information traveling on the road, whether it’s a credit card number or an email address.
HTTP/2 was introduced in May 2015. It increased page load speed by changing how the data is packaged and transported between the browder and the server. HTTP/2 allows a server to anticipate a browser’s need for more than one file. Unlike HTTP, which can transfer only one file at a time, HTTP/2 sends more than one file on the same road.
HTTP/2 also enables data to be transferred securely. This is because implementation of HTTP/2 requires HTTPS, a secure protocol for transferring files. When working with our clients to secure their sites, moving them to HTTPS is a no-brainer: Security is a ranking factor for Google and a better experience for their site visitors. Seeing a lock icon on a website builds brand trust, as well.
How Does a CDN Improve Page-loading Speed?
Implementation of HTTP/2 and HTTPS needs to be done correctly, by following best practices for site migration. This is because HTTPS can slow page-loading speed, which, as noted above, can negatively impact SEO. That’s where a CDN comes in.
Once HTTPS is in place, a CDN (content delivery network or content distribution network) allows site data to be hosted in a global network of proxy servers and data centers that are physically closer to users. Shorter “roads” mean faster page-loading speed. Without a CDN, a file must be transferred the physical distance between the a server and a user’s browser.
CDNS Work With HTTP/2
CDNs already cache static files and can communicate with the server, even if the server still uses HTTP/1.
Call Us Today to Implement HTTP/2
Whether your industry is in pharmaceuticals, biotechnology, life sciences, or R&D, HTTP/2 can enhance your website in three crucial areas:
- Higher Google search rankings
These benefits add up to a better user experience — and better user experience means increased conversions. Talk to Advanta today to discuss implementing HTTP/2 on your server.
Want to learn more? Check out Tom Anthony’s Deep Crawl Webinar, An Introduction to HTTP/2 for SEOs.